Updates & Announcements
See our July Newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/bsVJkL
This month's spotlight is on Ben Walter and his mentee Mohammed Adam! Check out what he had to say about the experience of being a mentor!
-Ben, how long have you been with ACE?
-Has your capacity at ACE changed in this time?
Yes, last summer I was an intern working 30 hours/week to develop and co-facilitate the Workforce Development Program. I also subbed for the Summer Reading Program and supervised ACE's two incredible student workers, Mohammed Adam and Adja Sackor.
When my internship ended, I applied to be a mentor and currently meet weekly with Mohammed Adam.
-What is your favorite memory at ACE?
There's not one moment in particular I can pinpoint. However, I've loved the opportunity to see Mohammed grow over the course of a year. When I met him last July, he spoke softly and infrequently. Now, he cracks jokes at every opportunity and is never without a smile on his face. Even when circumstances get him down, he's quick to return to good spirits. I never tire of spending time with him.
-What do you think your greatest accomplishment at ACE has been?
Putting together the Workforce Development Program last summer. While ACE has run the program before, nothing was recorded and I essentially created the program from nothing. I wanted to create a sustainable program, so I documented all the activities I planned to do and compiled a facilitator's manual. When the program finished, I added my notes to the manual so that future facilitators could learn from my mistakes and failures.
-What is the biggest lesson you've learned from working with our students/staff/volunteers?
A positive attitude can turn any situation good!
-What is your favorite activity/event at ACE?
It's not as much an activity as a series of moments: I love the feel of the office, particularly as students trickle in from school and interact with staff, volunteers, and each other. There's a palpable sense of community at ACE, and it's in those fleeting moments that I can feel it.
-If you had to convince someone to get involved with ACE what would you tell them?
In the words of Shia LaBeouf, "JUST DO IT!" (https://www.youtube
.com/watch?v=nuHfVn_cfHU). A commitment to ACE can be a big or small as you want it to be. (Currently, I come once a week for an hour and a half for the highlight of my week.) Try something new, make new friends, and learn about new people!
-Have you gotten any awards/recognition lately?
I just graduated from Clark University magna cum laude. I also received the Addams-Mill Award from the Sociology Department for academics and activism, and high honors of my honors thesis.
Thanks for sharing Ben, we appreciate all of your hard work!